Letter to the editor: Codeword for abolishing all social programs


To the editor:

It is about time that someone who is in the know told you and your readers the truth about a phrase that is very often used by today’s conservatives. That phrase is “limited-government conservative.”

To me, those are the three most frightening words in the English language. You might have noticed recently that some conservatives feel very badly because, as they have said, President Trump is not a “limited-government conservative,” as they are.

That happens to be true. He is not.

That phrase is actually a buzzword and codeword that really means that the person does not believe that the federal government should spend one cent on social programs that are intended to help people.

The ultimate goal of limited-government conservatives is one day to see that all such programs are abolished and eliminated from existence, especially Social Security, which they hate the most.

However, they do not and will not tell the truth to the American people about what they really believe and really want to do because they realize that most Americans do not agree with them. They also realize that some of their fellow conservatives do not agree with them.

Stewart Epstein
Rochester, New York

David Becker/Getty Images


  1. Agreed. Trump is not the disease but only a symptom. The main cause of our modern insanity is the trust placed in any one group of people other than ourselves. The government and those who are governed are supposed to be one and the same, but they are not. The people themselves must take responsibility for their own governance and welfare instead of relying on the upper classes to throw them a few crumbs. In a Stalinist society, the government is gigantic and controls the wealth, natural resources and means of production but as the people themselves are not in charge, their wellbeing is of no concern. In our capitalist system of economic feudalism, the wealthy corporate elites control the government, wealth, natural resources and means of production, and they, too, do not concern themselves with the welfare of the people. If the people really want change as well as socioeconomic justice, they must shed the notion that anyone other than themselves should govern. They must take that responsibility upon themselves.


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